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Federated Telephone receives $3 million in broadband funds

Federated Telephone, a rural Morris telecommunications cooperative, was awarded almost $3 million through the Recovery Act broadband program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Wednesday.

Federated will receive $2,987,274 to establish a Fiber to the Premise (FTTP) voice, video and data network. U.S Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced the awards Wednesday.

Farmers Mutual Telephone Co. in Lac qui Parle County was also one of five awards in Minnesota. Farmers Mutual was awarded $9.7 million.

A list of 126 awards in the U.S., see:

According to the USDA, through Federated Telephone's project, "more than 950 people stand to benefit, as do 20 businesses. In addition to the jobs this project will create upfront, it will drive economic development and create jobs for decades to come."

The other three Minnesota awards are:

0 Woodstock Telephone Co., serving Lyon, Pipestone and Rock counties ($15.2 million);

0 Wikstrom Telephone Co. in Kittson, Marshall and Roseau counties ($7.4 million);

0 Arvig Telephone Co. in Cass and Crow Wing counties ($5.04 million).

The 126 awards nationwide are $1.2 billion, and the total rises to $1.31 billion when $117 million of private investment sparked by the USDA grants is included. The awards were made in 38 states and tribal areas.

The 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's broadband initiatives are designed to accelerate broadband deployment in rural and other areas and are available to institutions that can create jobs and benefit the public.